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Subject:   Metal Streetlight Pole Found to Have Voltage
For Immediate Release:   
4/12/2011  3:47:00 PM
For More Information Contact:
Scott Thomsen  (206) 386-4233


Streetlight involved in car-pole accident at 23rd Avenue and E. Marion had 90 volts of electricity

SEATTLE Ė A metal streetlight pole that was replaced in January of this year was found to have voltage late last week. A dog detected the voltage when it sniffed the pole. A woman, who isnít a resident of the area, was walking her dog on April 4 when the incident occurred. She reported it to City Light on April 5 using the online streetlight repair reporting feature.

City Light sent a crew to troubleshoot and correct the problem to ensure that the streetlight was working properly. The cause of the voltage situation was improper installation when the pole was replaced in January resulting in frayed insulation where the service wire enters the lamp head.

The pole originally was damaged in August of 2010 when a car hit it. The pole was removed at that time. Crews replaced the pole in early January and found that the underground service that provides power to the pole also had been damaged. As a result, temporary overhead service was used to energize the streetlight when the pole was installed in January.

As a precaution, City Light is testing and inspecting approximately 60 metal streetlight poles that were damaged and replaced within the past year. Some of these poles were not in place when City Light did its comprehensive voltage testing in late December and early January. City Light is checking to make sure that these poles are properly installed.

City Light urges the public that if they suspect voltage at any metal streetlight pole or associated metal fixture that they report the incident immediately by telephone to the Streetlight Hotline (206) 684-7056.

Seattle City Light is the 10th largest public electric utility in the United States. It has some of the lowest cost customer rates of any urban utility, providing reliable, renewable and environmentally responsible power to nearly 1 million Seattle area residents. City Light has been greenhouse gas neutral since 2005, the first electric utility in the nation to achieve that distinction.

 

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